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Rupee weakens past 70-mark against US dollar

Ashwin Ramarathinam
At 2pm, the rupee was trading at 70 a dollar, down 0.81% from its previous close of 69.44

Mumbai: The Indian rupee on Wednesday weakened against the US dollar amid weakness in equities and as the RBI's easing of debt restructuring norms is being perceived as dilution of its stance on tackling bad loans . At 2pm, the rupee was trading at 70 a dollar, down 0.81% from its previous close of 69.44. The currency opened at 69.63 a dollar, touching a high of 69.55 and a low of 70.04. “Weakness in equities is contributing to the drop in the rupee,” Sajal Gupta, head of foreign-exchange and rates at Edelweiss Securities Ltd. “RBI easing debt rules isn't being seen positively by the market” as it is perceived as the RBI diluting its overall stance on non-performing loans,” added Sajal Gupta.

Yesterday, foreign investors sold $143.55 million in equity and bought $172.45 million in debt market.State-run banks were biggest buyers of sovereign bonds on Tuesday at Rs 1950 crore according to CCIL data and foreign banks were biggest sellers at Rs 1400 crore.

The 10-year bond yield stood at 7.369%, from its Tuesday's close of 7.418%. Yield climbed 5bps on Tuesday to 7.42% after reaching 7.45% its highest since December 17.

Benchmark Sensex Index gained 0.26% or 93.47 points to 36,161.80 points in pre-opening trade. Yesterday it gained 0.52%

Asian Markets were trading lower. Taiwan Dollar lost 0.711%, Indonesian Rupiah 0.484%, South Korean Won 0.482%, Malaysian Ringgit 0.181%, Philippines Peso 0.162%, Hong Kong Dollar 0.071% and Singapore Dollar 0.037%. However, Japanese Yen 0.577%, China Renminbi 0.403%, Thai Baht 0.251%, China Offshore 0.122%.

The dollar index, which measures the US currency's strength against major currencies, was trading at 96.1, up 0.02% from its previous close of 96.085.

With inputs from Bloomberg